Hoop Somuah

Partner Software Engineering Manager, Mixed Reality Africa, Microsoft

Hoop loves to tinkerer and is a cloud native architect at heart that dreams in distributed systems. Whether he is using a soldering iron or Glowforge or code, Hoop is always at the tip of the spear of computing paradigms. He is constantly studying, building and experimenting with innovation, with a knack for turning that into products that people experience all over the world. Today, his team helps drive Microsoft's investments in core Mixed Reality cloud services that power Microsoft Mesh, and the engineering office in Lagos, Nigeria. These cloud services enable presence and shared experiences from anywhere – on any device – through mixed reality applications. They also serve as the underpinning of edge computing devices like the HoloLens, and more broadly an entire ecosystem of emerging Mixed Reality solutions for various industries. He previously served as the Technical Advisor to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, where he applied a systems thinking lens to the competitive landscape, working at the intersection of business, product, and engineering systems across the company. That lens empowered him to author instructive whitepapers that spoke to the changing ecosystem of technology, with a point of view on how the sector will play out over the next decade. When the cloud as an industry, computing paradigm and way to build products was nascent, Hoop pushed the gaming industry headfirst into the era. As the former services architect leader for one of the largest game franchises, Halo by 343 Industries, and in partnership with Microsoft Research, he saw to it that the virtual actor programming model became the core of Halo's architecture. This meant eating concurrency challenges for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and more importantly, it ensured that gamers the world over had a more seamless experience. Earlier, Hoop spent time cutting his teeth working on development frameworks like WCF and .NET Remoting, and distributed systems that power the Zune Marketplace and Xbox Live — continuing to touch over 90 million people. Hoop studied Electrical Engineering at Stanford. Originally from Ghana, Hoop is continuously interested in the evolution of innately African technology on the continent, supporting Ashesi University and advising the Africans at Microsoft global employee community.

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